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Friday's papers: Train standstill, phishing and drug-resistant fungus

Rail services halt on Friday, fraudsters drain bank accounts and Finland records its first case of a rare fungus.

Ihmisiä Helsingin päärautatieasemalla 21. toukokuuta 2021.
The departure board at Helsinki's Central Railway Station was flashing red on Friday morning as drivers did not show up for work. Image: Jorge Gonzalez / Yle
Yle News

Train traffic in Finland is at a standstill on Friday after a protest by train drivers began at midnight, reports Helsingin Sanomat, which said Pasila’s main train station in Helsinki was deserted on Friday morning.

State railways VR on Friday reported that the stoppage was affecting HSL commuter trains as well as long-distance passenger and freight lines, cancelling nearly all rail traffic in the country.

The protest hinges on an alleged breach of contract. Drivers claim that VR has breached the existing collective agreement by forcing drivers to work when off duty.

Bank scam

Some 50 Aktia bank customers may have fallen victim to a phishing scam capturing users’ login codes, reports Swedish-language daily Hufvudstadsbladet. Aktia has, however, not confirmed the exact number of suspected victims.

Thomas Ranninen was one of the victims, according to HBL. Last Friday he logged on to Aktia’s website to pay a bill. Moments later three separate transfers of just under 10,000 euros were made from his account.

"Ten thousand seems to be the one-time withdrawal limit," he explained, adding that Aktia said it wasn’t certain that the bank would repay his losses. Ranninen said he has now filed a police report.

Henri Heinonen, the bank’s chief information security officer, said criminals are creating fake bank sites that rank highly in search results.

Finnish banks have urged customers not to access their online banking services via search engines. Instead, customers should type the bank's website address directly into the browser's search bar.

Fungal superbug

One of HS' most popular stories on Friday concerns Candida auris, a drug-resistant fungus that has caused serious hospital outbreaks throughout Europe.

HS reports that this spring Finland recorded its first case of the fungal pathogen in a hospitalised patient who had returned from India.

"The fungus was detected in routine tests taken during admittance, so we were able to prevent further infections," THL senior medical officer Emmi Sarvikivi told HS.

Candida auris is not to be confused with mucormycosis, or so-called "black fungus", currently affecting recovering Covid-19 patients in India.

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